I do not like where Chrome browser is going, and I'm typing this on Chrome.
Let me explain, there are a few pieces in this puzzle.
Language and API
- Dart provides its own methods to talk to the browser and access features such as storage, camera, geo.
- Google splits off from WebKit and starts its own browser engine Blink.
- I think this was never about WebKit. This decision is purely so that they can structure the chrome development to be completely in-house, and they can dictate including a second VM, without having to get approval from Apple's Safari guys.
- Google continues to manufacture the Chromebook. Even with a very low market penetration.
- The Android operating system is under the ChromeOS group. Now that may seem strange. Android has huge penetration, Chrome OS is unheard of. Why are they structured like this?
- Oracle sued Google for Java infringements, and Google does not licensing Java from Oracle. This means Google can't use a number of improved Java VM from Oracle who holds much stronger patents. Aka. Java performance on Google Android's Dalvik VM can't go faster because Google doesn't license those techniques from Oracle.
Joining the dots
- I think Dart will tie the whole thing together.
- Dart will provide API to Android, allowing developers to work directly with Android OS without going through the Dalvik VM.
- Chrome OS will run Dart natively, yes right now it's just a notebook that only runs a browser. But what if that browser now has access to OS level APIs? Suddenly it's a device that can run code that goes outside of the browser.
- Dart is Google's version of Microsoft's .NET Framework. Born out of a necessity to control the entire ecosystem and with a gentle push (lawsuit) from Oracle. To give them a complete framework and API that they can control completely, without having to ask for approval from anyone.
- Chrome browser is the Trojan Horse that will allow Dart to run on Windows & Mac. It will run on Android and ChromeOS (which Google controls).
- The only places where Dart won't run are going to be few: WindowsPhone and Windows RT - neither OS Google cares or has any plans to support. iOS currently has Chrome (without Dart) - it remains to be seen if Apple will bow to public pressure if Google plays the card to include Dart within the iOS Chrome browser. But I think that war will come, especially since Chrome is the gateway drug.
- So while we're bashing Adobe's Flash and MS' Silverlight for being non-standard and plugin architecture degrades the security of our systems, Google's been ramping up to ship another VM right under our noses.